Summer is my favorite time of the year, not only because my birthday falls in this season, but also because there's no school and no snow! Though it gets extremely hot and humid in Texas, we can't complain about the sunshine -or the cold treats we can eat to try and cool down.

Now that school is out, there's nothing better than taking the kids away from the television screen and getting outside to play. We've come up with a list of the top five playground in Lufkin-Nacogdoches. Pack lots of water and snacks and head outside with the kids for a  few hours of fun in the sun - without breaking your wallet.

1. Chambers Park in Lufkin

Chambers Park is one of Lufkin's oldest park facilities.  The park offers a variety of amenities, including a playground, picnic area, pavilion, bandstand, tennis courts, and a new spray play pad, which is perfect for a family gathering or organization activities. Click here for a map of the park.

2. Ellen Trout Park in Lufkin

Though many east Texans associate the name Ellen Trout with the Lufkin zoo, this park is one of Lufkin's finest. Unlike most parks, it offers a miniature train, a lake for fishing and modern playground equipment. It also offers a pavilion, a picnic area and unique nature trails.

The coolest part is the feeling you'll have of being in the wildlife, thanks to the zoo located in the same area.

3. Pecan Acres Park in Nacogdoches

This historic 23-acre park, located on the La Nana Creek Trail, is perfect for people who love the outdoors. It's dog friendly (as long as they're on a leash), runner-friendly with all the wooded trails, kid-friendly with the playground, family-friendly with the picnic area and exercise-friendly as it offers tons of grass space.

If you drive by the park on Starr St., you'll likely see a group of college students playing disc golf, or kids practicing their t-ball swings.

4. Kiwanis Park in Lufkin

Kiwanis Park, centrally located in Lufkin, is rich with facilities. It offers lots of picnic area, a large wooded space and it has been updated with a spray play amenity. It's also the only park in Lufkin with disc golf

It is an ideal park for families and organizations hosting events, and it's also perfect for people who love to exercise and play sports thanks to the nature trails and the basketball, volleyball and tennis courts.

5. Pioneer Park in Nacogdoches

Pioneer Park, located just off of South St. and Lenwood Dr. in Nacogdoches, is one of the biggest parks in the area (30 acres!), and offers group pavilions, picnic tables, playground equipment, charcoal grills, a disc golf course, a softball practice field, basketball and volleyball courts and a huge open playfield full of green grass.

It's the perfect park for a day out with the entire family, as the amount of amenities will keep everyone active and entertained.